Title: The Gates to Paradise
Word Count: 1713 words
Characters: The 11th Doctor, Amy Pond, and OCs
Spoilers: Not really
Episode Setting: Before “The Lodger”
Summary: The Doctor is given a chance to go home, but he must pay the ultimate price for it.
He lightly kissed Amy’s forehead and rubbed her back. She had fallen asleep in his lap while crying about Vincent. He told her it might not have helped, but humans get their hopes up so quickly and then fall so far down. The Doctor hated letting his friends down, but it always seemed to happen. And soon enough his friends would leave him. All his friends had left him eventually. Maybe it will be different with her.
The Doctor carefully lifted Amy in his arms and quietly exited the Tardis’ main room. The corridors seemed darker than usual to the Doctor so he began to sing softly.
All the single ladies
All the single ladies
Now put your hands up!
“Oh no …” The Doctor sighed. “Jack has been rubbing off on me. Well, at least you didn’t hear that Amy. Even though I am a pretty talented singer if I do say so myself.”
The Doctor looked down at his sleeping ginger and smiled. He liked Amy. In many ways she resembled him. She was resilient. She was caring. She was free. She waited a long time for him and most people wouldn’t do that.
As the Doctor turned the corner, a bright, white light blinded him. He held Amy close to his chest to protect her. After a few seconds, he lifted his head and Amy began to stir. The Doctor kneeled down and gently laid her against the Tardis’ hallway.
“Doctor …” Amy mumbled. “What’s going on?”
“Nothing, I promise.” The Doctor whisper. “Just a little … lighting problem. Go back to sleep.”
Amy smiled drowsily and closed her eyes. The Doctor sighed in relief and stood up. He pushed back his hair, straightened his bowtie, and squinted as he looked into the light.
The Doctor leaned closer to hear the mysterious voice again. No one else should have been in the Tardis or at least that’s what he thought. The Doctor moved closer and saw the outline of a man.
“Hello …” The Doctor edged towards the outline. “If you’re here for the Harry Potter party, I’m sorry but you missed it. It ended a few years ago.”
The Doctor shielded his eyes as the outline began to move closer to him. Suddenly, the Doctor heard the snap of fingers and the bright light vanished. He could now clearly see that it was an old man who wore long robes like a wizard. The man’s eyes were hidden by his long, gray hair and in his hand was a long and silver scepter.
“No!’’ The Doctor shouted in glee. “Is it my birthday and I forgot? Oh, clever me! I got myself a wizard!”
“Doctor, control yourself.” The Wizard spoke, softly. “I am here on my own accord.”
“Oh,” The Doctor replied, slightly disappointed in himself. “Okay, but next time ask me! I can’t have people, or wizards in your case, running in and about the Tardis’ hallways. Now, what are you doing here?”
“I came to give you back what you desire most.”
“And what would that be?”
The Doctor froze. He hadn’t heard that word in a long time. Gallifrey. His planet. His home. As he thought of Gallifrey, he saw the flames again. All around him was fire and his ear began to fill up with screams. He clutched his forehead and shook away any other memories of Gallifrey. His words caught in his throat.
“What? Gallifrey is gone.” The Doctor cleared his throat. “Gallifrey burned to the ground. I … destroyed it.”
“That is where you’re wrong, Doctor. I can restore it.”
“Pfft. That’s impossible!”
“I’ll prove it to you.”
Suddenly, the corridor erupted in an iridescent light and it faded away into an orange field. The Doctor’s hearts stopped when he looked around. It was Gallifrey. It was a Gallifreyan field. The Doctor’s eyes began to well up. It was his home. He was home. He bent down and a chill ran up his spine as he touches the carrot colored grass.
“I’m home.” The Doctor smiled then frowned. “What did you do? This can’t be real. Gallifrey is gone.”
“Not necessarily. I was gifted the power by my Master to open bridges to parallel universes. In this world, there was no war. Gallifrey was never harmed. No one ever died.”
“Yes, they are all here.” The Wizard pointed behind the Doctor.
The Doctor turned around slowly and he fell to the ground once he saw them. He couldn’t believe it! They were all there. His whole family. His parents. His wife. His children. His granddaughter. He looked up again they were all around him this time.
“Darling! I’m so glad you’re back. How was your trip?” The Doctor’s wife asked.
“Genevieve!” The Doctor embraced his wife and she combed her fingers through his hair. “I’ve missed you so much!”
“I’ve missed you too … ” Genevieve smiled.
“Grandfather!” Susan shouted, excitedly. “You’ve regenerated!”
“Susan!” The Doctor cried and pulled her into his hug. “My Arkytior! You’re here! Is that Campbell boy here too?”
“Father!” His children exclaimed. “We are so glad you’re back. You’ve been gone for so long!”
“ …., you have a lot of explaining to do!” His father shouted. “Leaving all of us in the blue, as the humans say, like that!”
“Oh hush!” His mother muttered to his father. “Sweetie, we’re all glad you are safe.”
“No, I’m glad you all are safe!” The Doctor exclaimed as he looked at his family once again. “I didn’t think I’d ever get to see you again.”
“What do you think Doctor?” The Wizard spoke.
All of a sudden, his family disappeared instantly and he was back in a dull Tardis corridor. The Doctor’s hearts ached as he realized he had only been holding air, not his family. An uncontrollable rage started to well up inside him. He wanted his family back. He wanted his old life back. He wanted Genevieve back.
“I can give you back this life … if you so desire. I can give you your family and old life back again.”
“What do I have to do?!” The Doctor shouted. “Give them back to me!! I’ll do anything.”
The Wizard smiled from under his gray beard. He dropped the bottom of his scepter on the ground twice and an ivory and gold gate appeared. The gate was engraved with ancient letters that even the Tardis couldn’t translate. And the letters moved. Everything moved, creating new letters and sometimes the letters were merged together to form a person or create. It seemed to the Doctor as if the gate was depicting a story.
“All you have to do is walk through the Gates to Paradise. And I’ll take her.”
The Doctor stepped forwards and his fingers wrapped around the golden handle. But something on the gate’s door caught his eye. The letters on the gate had formed into three people: One person was next to a gate about to open it, the second person was farther away trying to stop the first person, and the last person wore a mask and had grabbed the second person. Suddenly, everything clicked and the Doctor let his finger unwrap from the handle.
“What do you mean ‘her’?” The Doctor called out.
There was no answer.
The Doctor turned around and saw the Wizard. And in the Wizard’s arms was Amy and a knife was held against her neck through some kind of magic.
“Amy!” The Doctor cried out. “Let her go!”
“What?” The Wizard smiled. “You wanted your other life and I’d like someone to keep me company.”
“I don’t want it.”
“Don’t want what?”
“That life.” The Doctor sighed, deeply. “I will never give someone up for my pleasure. Not even for my old life. I don’t deserve that. I don’t deserve her, but she chose to be my friend. My first friend in this body. And as much as I want to see my family again, as much as it hurts to push them away, I need Amy. I promised her I’d show her the stars and even if that gate would give me back Genevieve, I will never give up someone I care about for it. ”
“Such … determination.” The Wizard pondered the Doctor’s words. “Fine. I can’t force you to do something you don’t want to do. But my Master will not be pleased.”
Without warning, the Wizard dropped Amy and disappeared. The Doctor ran over to him, trying to catch her but ended up tripping and falling on his face. Luckily, because he tripped Amy landed on his back safely. The Doctor grimaced and Amy shouted.
“Oi!” Amy rubbed her head drowsily and looked around. “Doctor? What are you doing under me?”
“Long story,” The Doctor wheezed. “Would you get off me, please?”
The Doctor returned to the corridor after he had fibbed to Amy about what had happened. He didn’t want her to worry so he gave her common, clumsy Time Lord excuse. She willingly walked herself to her bedroom which gave the Doctor a few extra minutes to go back and check if the gate was still there.
To his surprise, the gate was still there. He meandered slowly to the gate and wrapped his fingers around the handle. Before he pulled on it, her remembered Amy. He remembered River. He remembered Rory. He remembered everyone in this life. He wouldn’t have them in the life beyond the gate. Could he live without them?
The Doctor stepped away from the gate and turned around to walk back to the Tardis’ main room. He couldn’t live without his companions. They kept him going. They kept him on the good side. Without them, he would be just as bad as the other Time Lords.
Suddenly, the Doctor noticed a piece of paper lying on the ground where the Wizard had once stood. He picked it up and read the words.
Happy Birthday! Hope you had some fun on your little trip.
See you soon!
The Doctor crumbled up the paper and shoved it in his pocket angrily. Of course, it was him. What other person would offer him Heaven’s Gates and make him choose Hell’s Highway instead?